The most viscerally notable newcomer at DCU training this morning was goalie Shawn Crowe, who is one of two GKs currently in camp, along with Ryan McIntosh. (Starter Troy Perkins, of course, is in national team camp.)
For one thing, Crowe yells very, very loudly. Frequently, he yells "Good stuff!!!!!" at his teammates. Except he doesn't say "stuff."
"I get my personality from my mother," he told me today. "She's quiet like I am on a day-to-day basis, but when she gets to something she loves, that she has a passion for, then her true feelings come out too, and that's how I am."
"So she screams a lot?" I asked.
"She screams a lot, yeah," he agreed.
Also, he looks like a linebacker. Which might be a knee-jerk kind of thing to say, except in this case, it's true. He played running back, fullback and linebacker on youth football teams until the age of 14, when he quit to concentrate on soccer. He told me today that his dad was a free safety at Colorado before suffering a career-ending injury. Plus, he's 6-2, 215.
"He's a beast," DCU assistant and former keeper Mark Simpson said. "A lot of our guys kind of compare him to Zach Thornton. I'd say he's a little slimmer version of Zach, but he's got the body type and it can be intimidating. If you've got to go up for a ball in the air with him, you might think twice."
People always assumed Shawn would be a football player, even though he also played basketball and soccer and ran the 200 and 400 in track. People still tell him that he looks like a football player.
"I kind of fooled everybody," he said.
No one in his family had played soccer; he got into the sport as an elementary schooler, when another kid's parent saw him playing kickball on the playground. He was kicking the ball a lot further than everyone else. So the parent asked him if he wanted to try to play soccer, and he went to a practice and liked it, and around the age of 12 he moved into goal, and once he got to high school he gave up other sports.
"I liked football, but it just got real boring to me," he said. "I don't like going and stopping, going and stopping; I like everything continuing. That's what I love the most about soccer; everything's continuous."
Crowe played his college ball at Florida International, where he was a teammate of Bobby Boswell, who's been giving him advice on his MLS hopes. He spent last summer working out with Joe Cannon back in Colorado, and he still calls Cannon for advice, too.
His non-soccer plan is to get into real estate with his cousin in Colorado, but United Coach Tom Soehn saw him at a USL combine "and just said he had some good athletic qualities; kind of a raw goalkeeper that we might have to mold, but he said there might be something there," Simpson told me. "He's a big physical specimen and he seems to be a gamer. I need to work on the little things, the footwork and communication, but he's got natural raw ability in goal, and he's a physical athlete. There's something to work with."
So regardless, he's in United preseason camp now, which is kind of interesting.
[Note: Yeah, I get it, Goff has a blog, but seriously, if Bryan76 and Riz and SEKim and Dave Lifton and DCAustinite and all the others have abandoned me, just let me know and I'll stop writing about DCU. And if my editor could just let me know when he creates the Gilbert Arenas blog and the Local College Basketball Rankings blog, I'd appreciate it, so I can go home and lock myself in the bathroom. Thanks.]